Sunday, 21 March 2010

new year, new planting

Yes, yes, I know. I have sorely neglected my blog and this is my first post of 2010. To be honest there hasn't been a lot to write about as the weather, until a couple of weeks ago, has been so appalling. And there have been other things which have taken precedence, hence an extended period of radio silence.

Anyway, I'm back and pleased to say that a couple of weeks ago it was dry enough to get on site and do some digging and planting. Last year's brassica bed was cleared out, turned over and seed potatoes planted. We've planted 2 varieties each of 1st earlies, 2nd earlies and main crop. We actually ran out of room in the bed so the rest of the main crop - Mayan Twilight - were popped in the greenhouse for planting up at a later date.

The image below shows the brassica bed after it was cleared and turned over.

Also managed to lift the last of the snowball turnips which are fantastic in stews or as an accompaniment in their own right. Managed to dig over the root veg bed after harvesting the turnips, so all in all a good afternoon's work.

Fast forward two weeks and today found us working hard on site again. The garlic patch has been tended and all the plants are looking really healthy and seem to have survived the harsh start to the year.
We somewhat overestimated the number of seed potatoes required this year and ran out of space in Bed 2 (which had been planted up a couple of weeks prior). So we've utilised Bed 1 which was supposed to be the permanent bed in order to plant the remaining main crop spuds. Also sowed beetroot and parsnips in alternating rows in an attempt to introduce some inter-cropping. The theory being the beetroot will be ready well ahead of the parsnips and we'll be able to plant something else between the parsnips when the beetroot have been lifted. Time will tell! Below is a shot of Bed 1 (garlic patch in foreground) and Bed 2 which is completely over to spuds.

Bed 3 (to right of the picture below) is till jam-packed with onions and shallots so Bed 4 has now been designated as this year's brassica bed. This crop rotation business can be quite challenging !!!!

So today has proved to be another productive day and we're looking forward to being able to plant up cabbages in a few weeks' time once the seedlings have come on. There is lots going on in the greenhouse at home and I'm keen for things to start growing in the ground!!